The Chairmans’ Walk

Adrian Wilson, Chairman of Rosetta Nottingham Road Conservancy and Roy Tabernor, Chairman of Lions Bush Conservancy, recently undertook an experimental cross country walk from Nottingham Road to Fort Nottingham. This was, of course, with the permission of the relevant land owners. Adrian took the pictures and wrote this account.

A large part of the route was along the impressive ridge that runs between the two villages and ends in the newly proclaimed nature reserve at Fort Nottingham commonage, before the steep descent to Fort Nottingham.

fort notts view

Long shadows in the early morning, along with impossibly blue sky, impossibly green grass and impossibly blue dam.

long shadows

The route involved a number of fairly stiff climbs but the views from on top of the ridge were spectacular.

intrepid Roy setting a stiff pace up a steep climb

Springrove Dam and the Loteni Road on one side

springgrove dam

and the Dargle Valley, looking towards uMngeni Vlei,  on the other.

looking over Dargle to uMngeni vlei

Also interesting is the fact that this ridge is located on the catchment boundary between the Mooi and Umgeni Rivers.  At the top of a steep climb, looking back towards Nottingham Road.

looking back towards Nottingham Road

We admired the profusion of stunning wild flowers along the route, including Watsonia,

profusion of wildflowers

Cyanotis speciosa

cyanotis speciosa

Jamebritennia breviflora

jamesbritennia breviflora

Scilla nervosa

scilla nervosa

and lots of bracken with yellow Helichrysum in flower.

yellow bracken like plant

Might this be a Magic Mushroom?

magic mushroom

We surprised a yellow billed duck, and came upon her nest half way up a hill.

Nest of a yellow billed duck

Indigenous bush just below the summit of the ridge.

Indigenous bush just below the summit of the ridge

Strange stone structures on the commonage reminiscent of primitive man.

Strange stone structures

The walk took roughly 5 to 6 hours. At the end, Roy and Adrian, overlooking Fort Nottingham village speculated on whether there would be a broader interest in such cross country walks in the beautiful Natal Midlands under the banner of ‘The Chairmans’ Walk’. There must be endless possibilities.

Bird’s eye view of Fort Nottingham

 

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